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Jamie Carragher, Gary Neville.

Gary Neville thinks he knows why Man United will win the race for Alexis Sanchez

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Manchester United smashed past Stoke on Monday night with a comfortable 3-0 win at Old Trafford.

Jose Mourinho's men closed the gap to neighbours Manchester City to 12 points thanks to goals from Antonio Valencia, Anthony Martial and Romelu Lukaku, but Alexis Sanchez is the man on most fans' lips.

The Chilean only has six months remaining on his contract with Arsenal and a host of Premier League clubs are in a frenzy to secure his signature for what would seem to be a cut-price deal.

However, Manchester City, who were the clear favourites for months, have now reportedly pulled out of any deal because they believe the cost is too high.

Liverpool are said to have shown interest recently and Chelsea are set to make a late bid according to multiple reports, but the common belief is that Manchester United are in the driving seat.

A deal featuring £25 million and Henrikh Mkhitaryan moving to the Emirates Stadium has been mooted and United legend Gary Neville believes his recent omission from the United squad signals an imminent deal.

"The clearest sign that something's happening with Sanchez is that Mkhitaryan isn't playing, that he's not in the squad and Jose was happy to volunteer that information to us," Neville told Monday Night Football.

"He wanted to keep the player clear, saying that he does rate him but I think he'd happily swap him in any deal for Alexis Sanchez. Anybody would."

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Asked whether the Armenian playmaker had every truly won boss Jose Mourinho over, Neville added: "Not fully.

"He's a talented player but you have to have more than talent. He's shown glimpses that make you think he's coming but then he goes missing."

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The 28-year-old has only made two starts in the league since the beginning of November, so his exile from the lineup is nothing new. However, Mourinho freely admitted his omission from the squad for the Stoke victory was not tactical.

Neville is right though - nearly anyone would swap Mkhitaryan for Sanchez at this point and unless Chelsea blows their deal away, it looks like United will get their man.

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